beginners corner
Archive by Author
market volatility and option-selling decisions

Covered Combinations: Merging Covered Call Writing and Put-Selling into One Strategy

A Covered combination (“combo trade”) trade is the simultaneous sale of an out-of-the-money (OTM) call and an out-of-the-money  put with the same expiration date on 100 shares of a stock or ETF (exchange-traded fund). It consists of a combination of a covered call and a short put position on a share-for-share basis. The investor generates two premiums from the [...]

Leave a comment Continue Reading →
covered call writing calculations

Using Put-Selling To Enter A Covered Call Trade At A Discount

Combining covered call writing and selling cash-secured puts into a multi-tiered option strategy is one way to hedge against bear and volatile market environments. In my book, Selling Cash-Secured Puts, I refer to this as the PCP or put-call-put-strategy. First I will give a general overview of the strategy and then an example using specific [...]

25 Comments Continue Reading →
Ask Alan

Ask Alan #106 – Using Put Options To Buy Stocks At A “Discount”

Alan answers a question shared by Richard, who asks: “In your recent seminar in Philadelphia you briefly mentioned that you could buy a stock at a discounted price using puts. Can you give an example how to do this with one of the stocks on your premium stock list? Thanks very much.” If you want [...]

11 Comments Continue Reading →
covered call writing and put-selling inj bear markets

Comparing Covered Call Writing And Put Selling In Bear Markets

Our stock options strategies, whether writing covered calls or selling cash-secured puts (the topic on my just published book) requires us to make an overall market assessment before entering any trades. In last week’s article we evaluated bull market scenarios. In this week’s blog we will examine bear market environments. When selling covered calls we would favor in-the-money [...]

11 Comments Continue Reading →
Comparing covered call writing and selling cash-secured puts

Comparing Covered Call Writing And Put Selling In Bull Markets

Covered call writing or put-selling? In-the-money or out-of-the-money strikes? When we view an options chain there are some basic principles we must factor into our final covered call writing or put-selling decisions. First, which of these two strategies is most appropriate? Unfortunately, there is no one answer that is right for every investor. I prefer [...]

30 Comments Continue Reading →
covered call writing techniques

Covered Call Writing With Protective Puts: A Proposed Strategy

When protective puts are integrated into our covered call writing strategy it is known as the collar strategy. The covered call aspect of the trade generates cash flow and the protective put leg serves as an insurance policy against catastrophic share depreciation. Recently, one of our members, Gary, shared with me a related strategy he had [...]

18 Comments Continue Reading →
interest rates and option premiums for covered call writing and put-selling

RHO: Why Interest Rates Effect Our Option Premiums

Interest rates and the option Greeks play an important role in understanding option trading basics. Rho, not considered a major Greek, measures the change in an option’s price resulting from a 1% change in interest rates. When interest rates do change, it is normally by 25 basis points, not a full percentage point and that’s [...]

12 Comments Continue Reading →
Ask Alan

Ask Alan #105 – The Impact of Dividends on our Option Premiums

Alan answers a question shared by Bryan, who asks: “What impact, if any, do dividends have on our options premiums when selling covered calls? Thanks.” If you want more “Ask Alan” videos, you can view the archive. More Video: For those new to Alan’s system of Covered Call Writing, be sure to take the Free [...]

9 Comments Continue Reading →
implied volatility and option pricing

Implied Volatility: General Market Conditions That Make Option Values Move Up Or Down

Option trading basics teaches us that selling call and put options is actually selling time value. Time value consists mainly of time to expiration stats and the implied volatility (IV) of the underlying security. Since most of us are selling monthly options, the main distinguishing factor in our option prices is the implied volatility…we are [...]

13 Comments Continue Reading →
Exit strategies for covered call writing

Closing Our Entire Covered Call Position When Share Price Rises: The Mid-Contract Unwind Exit Strategy

Exit strategies or position management is one of the three major components of this strategy we must master to become elite covered call writers. The other two are stock (or ETF) and option selection. In my books and DVDs I mostly focus on scenarios that can result in losses and how to mitigate those losses or [...]

21 Comments Continue Reading →